Becoming the 88th Student Government President

This year’s Student Government election was unlike any other in recent Minnesota State University, Mankato history. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, candidates had to tackle unforeseen obstacles, such as campaigning completely online, unlike their predecessors who were able to physically campaign on campus.

Although these unprecedented times called for creative solutions, it didn’t hinder the success of the winning party: Empowering Mavericks. Thanks to dozens of campaign volunteers, the party reached out to thousands of students to ensure that their message was heard through online candidate forums, social media postings and email communication.

Andrew Trenne, a junior Political Science major and History and Business Law minor, was elected as Minnesota State Mankato’s 88th Student Government president.

Trenne, who is originally from Chaska, decided to come to Minnesota State Mankato because he thinks the campus is the best in the state and he enjoys the size of the university—which he says allows him to meet new people while still having small and attentive class sizes.  

Although it’s hard to believe now after his victory, Trenne didn’t think that he’d ever become the president of the student body. He dreamed of it but says that he was shy and had little involvement in high school, so he never expected to be in the position that he is today.

“I always wanted to become president but never thought I would get to this point. My earliest memory of this was when I was a freshman; I went to the new student rally during Welcome Week. I saw the then Student Body President addressing my incoming class, and I remember whispering to my friend, ‘I want to be him,’ but I only considered it a dream and something I didn't think I could reach,” he says.

Despite his humble journey, Trenne’s work has not gone unnoticed. Mark Constantine, director of the Centennial Student Union and Student Activities, has had the pleasure of working with Trenne over the last three years in his positions in the Residence Hall Association, Student Union Board and Student Government. He says that Trenne is not the kind of person who looks for a pat on the back; rather, his involvement comes from his authentic love for the University.

“He [has] worked tirelessly for the students at Minnesota State Mankato. Talk about taking risks and stepping up, Andrew is doing that on a daily basis. Whether he is talking to President Davenport, Vice President Jones or a dean of a college, Andrew is at the forefront of most student movement on this campus,” says Constantine.

No matter how big or small of a decision the University makes, Trenne feels that students should be right there at the table with administration to provide input on issues that affect them daily.

“If we aren't a part of the decision-making process on things like tuition, student fees, University policies and even the COVID-19 conversations, then our issues as students won't be addressed or heard,” he says.

Trenne hopes to leave his legacy at Minnesota State Mankato by helping advance the student body and addressing ever-changing student needs. He hopes that he can make a difference at the University not only academically, but also in student life to create long-term accomplishments that set the University forward in addressing student needs.

Although he never expected to make it this far, Trenne is proud of himself for the accomplishments that he has made during his time as a Maverick and is excited to see what he can do as the 88th Student Government president.

“I truly want to show people that anyone can do it if you just put time into it and really work to grow yourself as a person. Minnesota State University, Mankato is a great place to do that, and I am super proud of our University,” Trenne says.